Cosplay interviews! A weekly feature on Animetion where we talk to cosplayers on what motivates them, plus a cool gallery showcasing their cosplays.  Here we talk to English cosplayer:

Name: Joanna J L Yap 
(a.k.a. Shinn Asuka/NekoFlameAlchemist)

Q: When did you start cosplaying and how long for?

I first started cosplaying in 2006 and have been cosplaying ever since, right up to the present day.

Q: What attracts you cosplay?

I think it's a form of escapism.  Sometimes, it's nice to just be another person for the day and get away from the normal life.  It's definitely a fun challenge to try and keep in the character (of a cosplay) for as long as you can!  It also has great creativity values to it, as well as social ones too.  A lot of cosplayers are generally fun people to hang out with and overall very friendly!

Q:  What has been your favourite cosplay?

I think it's my Roy Mustang one (from Full Metal Alchemist - ed.), as it is the one that most people remember me for.  Also it was my first cosplay, so I guess it will always hold a special place in my heart. Hee hee.

Q: Most memorable moment whilst cosplaying?

Oh I think there are too many good times.  I think there have been a lot of memorable times - from just little photoshoots with friends to things that go on during conventions.  I don't think I could narrow it down to just the one event ^o^;;

Q:  Have you had any cosplays go wrong/encountered problems whilst making cosplays?

Recently I have been pretty much ordering cosplays and then altering them slightly to make them fit more, or make them more accurate as I don't really have a lot of time with my job.  I guess the worst thing that has happened to one of my cosplays was that it was eaten up by a moth - but luckily, it was repairable.  Phew!  I try not to dwell on the things that go wrong, so I've probably forgotten a few bad experiences XDD

Q:  Have you ever regretted cosplaying?

I'm going to be honest and say yes.  I've had times where there's been some sillyness that's gotten me down and I have thought twice about cosplaying.  But I've had really supportive friends all along the way that have always helped me back up off my feet ^o^

Q:  Have you ever done group cosplay? If so how did you find that experience?

I'm actually getting quite attached to some group cosplays these days.  It is definitely an enjoyable experience!  Everyone has something different to bring to the group and that is what makes the group work out.  It's also a great way to make new friends as there are always going to be newer cosplayers that are popping up that you can include into groups.  I'd definitely recommend group cosplays to people!

Q:  What cosplays are you planning?

Lots!  This year alone, I'll be doing:

Shinn Asuka from Gundam SEED Destiny, Roy Mustang from Full Metal Achemist, Kula Diamond from The King of Fighters, Lelouch Lamperouge from Code Geass, Genesis Rhapsodos from Final Fantasy VII: Crisis Core, Schrodinger from Hellsing, Psylocke from X-Men, L from Death Note, Hitsugaya Toshiro from Bleach and bankai! Ichigo from Bleach to name a few.

Q:  Do you have a dream cosplay?

There are so many I'd love to do like Rei's plugsuit from Neon Genesis Evangelion and a full Gundam cosplay as well.  I doubt either will happen though :(

Q:  Do you have one piece of advice that you would give to cosplay virgins?

Don't panic!  Cosplayers are generally nice people and we are always supportive.  Don't get disheartened if your first cosplay doesn't turn out how you want it to be - it happens to most of us!  It's all for fun after all!

Q:  Do you have an account with the website Cosplay island/other social networking sites?

I have a Deviantart: http://nekoflamealchemist.deviantart.com

Also click here to see a video interview of Joanna & her friends!

(click any picture for a larger image)

Jo as Roy Mustang from Full Metal Alchemist Jo as Shinn Asuka from Gundam Seed Destiny Jo as LeLouch from Code Geass

Jo as Psylocke from X-MenJo as Motoko from Ghost In The Shell Jo as Roy Mustang from Full Metal Alchemist